The UK’s new prime minister, Rishi Sunak, held his first call with President Volodymyr Zelensky on Tuesday, Oct. 25, in which he offered reassurances that Britain would continue to support Ukraine.
“The prime minister said the United Kingdom’s support for Ukraine would be as strong as ever under his premiership, and President Zelenskyy could count on his government to stand in continued solidarity,” a 10 Downing Street spokesperson said.
“The prime minister also noted the importance of the International Atomic Energy Agency’s work in Ukraine to ensure nuclear safety and provide transparency around any disinformation.
“Both leaders agreed on the need to continue to place pressure on Putin’s barbaric regime through continued economic sanctions.
“President Zelenskyy congratulated the prime minister on his appointment and wished him a happy Diwali. The prime minister thanked him and said he hoped they would see each other in person soon.”
In a tweet posted shortly after the conversation, President Zelensky described the call as “excellent”.
“In an excellent conversation with Rishi Sunak, we agreed to write a new chapter in Ukraine-U.K. relations, but the story is the same – full support in the face of Russian aggression,” he wrote.
“I appreciate PM’s first call to Ukraine. And always grateful for the support of the British people.”
Earlier in the day, Rishi Sunak met with King Charles III, who officially asked the new leader of the Conservative Party to form a government.
Sunak’s rise to the top comes amidst a long period of chaos in British politics, with no less than five prime ministers taking office in the past six years. However, this turmoil, he claims, will not affect the United Kingdom’s support for Ukraine.
Speaking to Kyiv Post following Sunak’s victory, Paul Bristow, a Conservative Party Member of Parliament who gave numerous televised interviews staunchly supporting Boris Johnson’s bid to return, said:
“Despite a focus on domestic issues, it’s crucial that the war in Ukraine and our support for their armed forces remains a top priority.
“The new prime minister has my full support and I fully expect him to quickly assure everyone about the UK’s continued solidarity with the Ukrainian people.”
Writing exclusively in Kyiv Post on Ukrainian Independence Day, the now incumbent PM himself addressed all Ukrainians, saying:
“Your steadfast courage in standing up to aggression has given hope to peaceful and freedom loving people around the world, and sends a clear message to despots that no matter how the odds may be stacked in their favour, they will never prevail.
“Whatever the changes here in our country, we Brits will always remain your strongest ally.
“We will keep supporting your brave fighters to protect your citizens, we will keep providing humanitarian aid to ensure you have access to medication and food, and we will keep sheltering your loved ones until they can return home safely and sleep soundly.”
You can read Sunak’s letter in full here.
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